Denver Broncos defensive coordinator Dennis Allen has emerged as the top candidate to fill the Oakland Raiders' head coaching vacancy, multiple sources have reportedly told ESPN. The progress is reportedly so advanced that other candidates for the job -- including Marty Mornhinweg and Mike Tice -- have been told that the Raiders have already made their decision. The Raiders fired Hue Jackson despite the fact that he lead the team to an 8-8 record, which was tied for their best record since 2002.
The hiring of Allen would be notable for several reasons. First off, he would be the first defensive coach the Raiders have hired since to be their head coach since Al Davis owned the team. John Madden, who was the linebackers coach prior to being hired as the team's head coach in 1969, was the last non-offensive coach to be hired. Allen would also become the first former Broncos coach to be hired since the Raiders lured Mike Shanahan away from them in 1988.
The Broncos did not exactly have a shutdown defense, as they ranked 24th in points allowed (24.4) and 20th in yards per game (357.8). That said, both marks would be an improvement over the Raiders' 2011 performance, as they ranked 29th in both areas.
For more on this potential hire, be sure to check out Raiders blog Silver and Black Pride.